make money with PinterestCan you make money with Pinterest?

Crikey, I’ve heard this question so many times. When I started raving about the power of Pinterest to my friend, she said “it all sounds great, but how do you actually make money with Pinterest?”

I expressed to her that I had dreams of creating online courses and to achieve this, I would need to grow an audience of people who were likely to be interested in those courses.

Because most course creators create their course, slap it on their website and expect people to buy. But this simply doesn’t work. (Trust me, I’ve tried it!)

This has led to many creators feeling unsuccessful for not selling their courses. And guess what? There’s a better way of going about it.

Instead, you need to grow an audience of people who know, like and trust you and who are primed to hear about your online course. Looking back, this is what I’d do if I was just getting started with Pinterest, or if I was starting a new business.

And before we dive in, sign up for my FREE 30 day guide that will show you how to grow your website traffic with Pinterest.

First of all, affiliate links aren’t the answer

One way to make money with Pinterest is through affiliate links. When I heard about affiliate marketing I thought I’d give it a go and I was really excited about the potential opportunity of making an additional income stream. Over a period of a couple days I wrote a list of all the tools that I used and loved, and I searched to see whether they had affiliate programs. I was really excited about adding another income stream to my business and I fell into the collective mindset of “all I need is a healthy dose of affiliate links and I’ll be raking it in”. How wrong was I?!

I soon realised that it wasn’t adding much to my wallet. Sure, I was getting a few clicks on those links but none of them turned into buyers. What a bummer…

But what did I expect?

My blog was in its early days, so I knew it wouldn’t supplement by consulting income. What this did confirm to me however, is that affiliate marketing isn’t feasible unless your site is enormous.

For that reason, I put affiliate marketing on the back burner and I invested more of my time in developing programs and courses. Now, that’s a smarter strategy! Don’t get me wrong – that doesn’t mean that I still won’t promote products that I love, I just won’t invest too much of my time promoting them.

Online courses are the future

A lot of small business owners start on their business journey with high hopes. They think “ok, I’m going to sell a service that’s going to be amazing and incredibly valuable!”.

But shortly into their journey they struggle to manage their workload, get burnt out by demanding clients and feel like a failure because they didn’t reach their income goals.

Soon they grasp the perils of a service-based business – one-on-one work limits them to trading hours for dollars. They realise that there’s a limit to how much money they make because there’s only one of them. And they start to look for ways they can pop the cap on their income ceiling.

What’s the secret to creating a profitable online business that lights you up?

Online courses.

In the past few years there’s been an influx of people creating online courses. Even celebrities are doing them!

Why? Because people love getting engaging and getting actionable advice. People want to improve their skills, be better and get promoted at work.

But what has this got to do with whether you can make money on Pinterest?

Pinterest is the handshake and email is the sales pitch

A lot of business owners think they can use Pinterest to create “quick wins” of income. They think that they need to create pretty pins to drive people to affiliate links or that they need to sell directly on Pinterest. (Don’t get me wrong you can do that but there’s a better way to go about it!).

Instead, think of Pinterest as a platform for your brand. See it as a marketing tool to showcase your best content and drive traffic to your website.

When people start to eat up your content, invite them to become a bigger fan and join your email list.

Take them on a journey, provide them with value, give them specific and actionable advice and in this process, you can begin to promote your online courses.

In short, don’t use Pinterest to directly sell to your audience but use it as an introduction to your brand, where you can invite your audience to dig deeper and enrol in your online courses.

Make money with Pinterest: final thoughts

If you want to make money on Pinterest, it’s much better to abandon quick ways of earning an income, such as affiliate links and replace them with other things, like online courses or programs. Not only will you make more money, but you’ll have products that you can sell over and over again. Which means that you’ll have a product suite and a foundation for a sustainable business.

Interested in learning more about how to make money with Pinterest? Good, because I created a FREE 30 day guide to help you grow your traffic and make money with Pinterest. Sign up here:

I hope this article helped you to understand the bigger picture of how to make money with Pinterest. Now, I’d love to answer your questions. What would you like to know about Pinterest?

Some general Pinterest marketing tips

I’ve written a few articles on Pinterest. They’re gold, yo, and you’re gonna learn all the hacks and strategies to grow an engaged tribe before you make money with Pinterest.